CHARACTER TALK TUESDAY-MOLLY PEYTON

Tell us how long you’ve lived in Peakview County.

My husband, Jim and I purchased Peaktop Guest Ranch almost thirty years ago. We absolutely love these mountains and the community. We also love running a guest ranch. Our two children grew up here.

What exactly is a guest ranch?

I’m glad you asked. A guest ranch, or dude ranch as they’re sometimes called, are wonderful places for family vacations. It’s an American-style all-inclusive vacation. The main activity is horseback riding, although there is plenty of other activities to keep our guests busy if the don’t ride. There’s many miles of hiking trails, fishing, tennis courts, and a swimming pool. During the summer months, everyone stays a whole week, from Sunday until Sunday. We have activities every evening. We have a square dance, singing around the campfire, cookouts, hayrides, and an old fashioned melodrama. During our off-season, September through May, guests can choose to come for a weekend or just a couple of days. We are closed in January and most of February.

That sounds wonderful.

People like it. We have many families that come year after year. We’ve even gotten to the point where kids who grew up coming here are now bringing their children.

Any plans to retire?

Not in the near future. Our hope is someday when we get too old to want to do this full time, that our kids will take over. Our son, Brandon is a junior at Colorado State majoring in animal science with a minor in business. He hopes to become a vet. It would be great to have our own with so many animals on the ranch. He loves this place as much as we do.

Where is your ranch from the town of Peakview?

It’s located about fifteen miles northeast of town. It’s very isolated, which is what guests like. They come to get away from civilization. We still don’t have cell service, and we like it that way. There’s always something going on. Stop by and check us out if you get the chance.

CHARACTER TALK TUESDAY-CYNTHIA WELCH COULTER

I hear you are a newcomer to Peakview. What brought you to this community?

I was practicing law in Chicago. I got burnt out and needed a break between Thanksgiving and Christmas. A partner of mine told me about Peaktop Guest Ranch. Even though they were closed for the winter, the Peytons graciously allowed me to come and stay. I fell in love with the Colorado Rockies. Then there was a certain cowboy, AJ Coulter. By the time the new year rolled around, I’d fallen in love with him, too. We decided to start our lives together here in Peakview County. It’s a magical place.

Do you practice law here in Peakview?

Only part time. AJ and I bought a small ranch. I’ve been spending a lot of my time decorating and remodeling. It’s not something I thought I’d enjoy, but I love it. I’m also working on a romance novel. That’s fun. Peakview’s only attorney, San Phillips, now spends his winters in Wyoming with his new wife. I’ve been covering his practice for him while he’s gone. I enjoy it. Let’s me keep up with my legal skills. I may open my own little office at some point.

What is your favorite thing about Peakview?

I love being in a small town. It’s so different from the big city. Everyone knows each other and looks out for them. It’s like one big family. I didn’t have that before. The people here are great. You never feel alone.

So you think you’ll stay?

Most definitely. This is a great place to call home. Our ranch is perfect. We have horses, a couple dogs, and of course our cat, Smokey. It’s a long story, but we give him credit for bringing the two of us together. AJ has two daughters who love to visit here as well. It’s a forever home

 

 

 

CHARACTER TALK TUESDAY-JAKE MIDNIGHT

Welcome, how long have you lived in Peakview County?

All my life. I was born and raised in Aspen Ridge and now live with my wife and stepson on my ranch outside of Peakview. We also have three horses, two dogs, six cats, 6 chickens, and two pigmy goats. It’s quite the zoo sometimes. My stepson, Ethan, constantly wants to add more animals. I think he should grow up to be a vet.

What do you do for a living?

I’m an EMT for Peakview Fire and Rescue. Have been for over twenty years. We serve all of Peakview County.

Tell us more about your job.

It’s always interesting. We handle all kinds of calls here in the Colorado high country. From vehicles accidents caused by flatlanders driving too fast on curvy mountain roads, to bear and mountain lion sightings, to rescues of hikers and climbers. Every day is different. That’s one thing I like about the job. It never gets boring. And I help those in need–it’s rewarding.

You’re newly married, how’s that?

Married life is wonderful. Kelly, my wife, manages Sam’s Hardware in Peakview. I love having her and Ethan at my ranch. Actually, I met her as part of my job, when Ethan had an asthma attack. He wasn’t used to the high altitude.

Was it love at first sight.

Hardly, we didn’t hit it off very well at first, but it all worked out in the end. I’m glad it did. I’d lived alone for a long time. Having a family is the best.

Anything else you’d like to tell us?

If you’re planning a trip to our beautiful county, rest assured that you will have the best help if anything happens. I think we have the best fire department around. Hope to see you all soon.

CHARACTER TALK TUESDAY-ANN ANDERSON

Hi. My name is Ann Anderson. I live with my husband of almost thirty years, Gary, on a small farm just out of town off the highway.

Are you from Peakview?

Almost, I grew up over in Aspen Ridge. I met Gary when I was in high school. We both went to Mountain High.  It was pretty much love at first sight, we started dating when we were Juniors and have been together ever since. It must run in the family. The same thing happened with my daughter, Penny and her now husband, Luke.

Anyway, once we decided to get married, Gary bought our farm, and we’ve lived there ever since. Gary runs a few head of cattle, some horses, and chickens. My pride and joy is my vegetable garden.  I sell produce to all the neighbors each fall.  I love growing things and seem to have a green thumb.

You mentioned Penny. Is she your only child?

Yep. God only blessed us with one, but she is our pride and joy. And now I have a grandson, Bronco. He’s just the cutest little guy. Penny and Luke live a the Walker Ranch which buts right up to our property. I can walk over there and see my grandson every day. Some days, Penny even drops him off when she works at the camp. Gary and I both love our new role as grandparents. We’re hoping that they have a couple more.

Do you have any other interests besides your garden and your grandson?

I have more interests than time these days. I love to crochet. I’ve made a few new baby blankets recently. I’m part of the women’s group at church. We do a lot to help the needy in our community. Gary says I need to slow down, but that’s not happening any time soon.

Anything special you can tell us about living in Peakview County?

It’s the best. The weather, the scenery, the friendly people–it never gets old. I wouldn’t live anywhere else. It’s the best place on earth. Drop on by and see you, you’ll see what I mean.

Character Talk Tuesday-Nicole Brady

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

My Name is Nicole. I was born and raised right here in Peakview in that big white house across the street from the café.

So you’ve always lived here.

No, I left for college in Fort Collins and then moved to San Francisco. The big city was fun and exciting, and I met a guy who I thought was fun and exciting also. Until he wasn’t. When it all fell apart, I came back to the only place I felt safe.

Why had you stayed away so long?

My mom died from cancer. There were so many memories of her here. I hated coming back to a home without her. Oh, I loved my dad, but it just wasn’t the same.

Had this town changed when you came home?

The town itself not much, but the people. Dad was engaged to Vickie (who I’ve learned to love, by the way) And then there was Rick.

Rick?

My wonderful husband, Rick Brady. I’d known him since kindergarten. He was the skinny, nerdy kid we nicknamed., Scarecrow. I never gave him the time of day. But boy did he fill out nicely! And I discovered what a wonderful person he was. He’s a vet, and we live and work on his ranch. Life couldn’t be better.

Anything you’d care to share that we don’t know about you?

I’m an amateur artist. I love to sit outside our home overlooking the Brady Ranch and paint. Stop by sometime and I’ll show you what I’ve done.

CHARACTER TALK TUESDAY-MARISSA DALTON

What’s your name and how old are you?

My name is Marissa, and I’m ten years old. I live on the Dalton Ranch outside of Peakview.

Have you lived here your whole life?

Nope. First I lived with my mom and Grammie in Denver. Then Mom couldn’t take care of me anymore so I just lived with Grammie. But she got sick and couldn’t take care of me, so I had to go live in an awful foster home. The other kids were mean to me. That’s when I got to come to Peak Adventure Camp. I loved it there, and I learned to ride horses. I met my best friend, Penny, and her boyfriend, Luke. I guess Penny told her friend, Melanie about me, and Melanie said she’d be my new foster mom. I was so excited when I ‘rived in Peakview. I got a new mom and a sister, but Mom started dating Hank, and I thought she’d run off with him and leave me like my real mom did. I was scared. But you know what? They didn’t run off, Hank lobed me too, and asked all of us to be his family. Hank is  a cowboy, and cowboys don’t lie. Now I have my own dog Scruffy, and my own horse and we live in a big, beautiful house. They’re going to ‘dopt me and keep me forever.

It sounds like you like it here.

I love it. I have my fambly and all kinds of grandparents. Penny just had a baby, and Mom is going to have a baby brother for me. I got lucky, some foster kids don’t. That makes me sad.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I think I might like to be a horse trainer, or a dog trainer. I love animals. Or maybe I’ll be  a social worker and find homes for kids like me. That would be good.

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CHARACTER TALK TUESDAY-HOWARD CRANDALL

Welcome, tell us about yourself.

My name is Howard, my wife, Violet, told me I had to do this interview. What do you want to know?

What do you do in Peakview and how long have you lived here?

I’ve been here almost 40 years. I was in my twenties, when I happened upon this town. Never left. I’d worked a mechanic, so I was able to purchase the gas station and shop cheap from the estate of a man who had run it many years before. I love it here. You asked what I do. Besides running the garage, I own some cabins down by Apple Creek that I rent out in the summer, I plow and tow folks out of jams, and I’m kind of the unofficial mayor of this place. Someone’s got to make sure the town functions.

Tell us about your family.

There’s Violet, of course. My beautiful bride, We’ve been married a couple years now. Known her for over thirty. Stan, her deceased husband, was my best friend for years. After he passed, I watched out for her. You know, it’s what friends do. Somehow, it gradually become more than a friendship. I still don’t see what she sees in an old cout like me, but I’m glad she gave me a chance. That same year, I met my daughter, Melanie and my granddaughter, Sophie for the first time. I didn’t even know they existed, now I can’t imagine life without them. And now there’s Melanie’s husband Hank and their daughter, Marissa. My life is full.

What do you like best about living in Peakview?

Aside, from it being far from any big city or civilization, I like how everyone looks out for each other. We’re one big family here. No one goes without help. I credit my wife for much of that, she’s the glue that holds this town together.

Tell us one thing most people don’t know about Howard Crandall.

Let’s see. I used to be quite the dancer in my younger days. I could really cut a rug. I may appear clumsy, but I’m pretty limber as long as my arthritis doesn’t flare up. Violet loves it when I take her dancing. We don’t get to do that near often enough.

Any last words.

If you’re ever in north central Colorado, stop on by and check out our tiny town. Who knows, you might never want to leave.